Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity

Montgomery Council Reverses Course On Land Purchase

We noted last week the dance between Ike Leggett and the county council over plans for a science city near Johns Hopkins' Montgomery campus. The particular point of contention was what to do about a stretch of land near Montgomery Village known as the Webb tract, which would be the foundation for a related government reorganization.

A majority of council members had voted Thursday to recommend purchasing just part of the land. Now they've voted to buy the whole thing.

The council members had balked at buying the piece of the Webb property that would have been used as the new home for the county's public safety training academy. That's because -- stay with me -- if they bought that, it might signal their support for allowing plenty of science jobs and homes in a planned development near Johns Hopkins, which includes, yes, the site of the current public safety training academy.

But the land owner dropped the price, and a group of residents weighed in for buying the whole thing, under the theory that the county will be a better neighbor than some random set of warehouses that might be built there. "This is the time to buy land," said Nancy Floreen (D-At large). "The price is right. The opportunity is there."

The council has given itself a deadline of year's end to decide how much building they do want to allow as part of the so-called "science city" near Johns Hopkins.

Leggett's team sees Tuesday's vote a major step forward on that plan. But some council members who voted yes on the Webb piece, like Mark Elrich, say they still can't be counted on to support a science community that's too big. Just how many jobs and homes will eventually be allowed -- and whether whatever figure is politically palatable is worth the effort -- will be hashed out in the coming weeks and months.

By Michael Laris  |  September 22, 2009; 5:58 PM ET
Categories:  Michael Laris , Montgomery County  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: First Click -- Maryland
Next: Obama Gets Solid Marks Among Maryland Voters


Stay with me. This a more reasonable explanation of the council's reluctance to bless the overblown real estate development being sold as "Science City". The top class fire training facility would not be duplicated at the new site. There are currently 1 million square feet of empty biotech space in the I-270 corridor just waiting for "plenty of science jobs". In a front page story on Sept 23, The Gazette reports "the state's transit, highways, and transportation agencies...calling the 800 acre Science City...unrealistic and ultimately untenable without massive goverment spending".

Posted by: DrRock1 | September 24, 2009 10:15 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2010 The Washington Post Company